On Saturday, March 6th, Hampden County MRC’s provided a full day train-a-thon at the E. Longmeadow Senior Center. It was open to all Western MA MRC volunteers as well as Worcester County, Region 2. Volunteers began their day with MRC 101, presented by Robert Klupa from the Springfield MRC who engaged the participants with personal accounts of his volunteer experiences during some significant events including the Springfield tornados.
Following a short break, the training continued with ICS 100 skillfully taught by Robert Hassett from the Springfield Fire Department.
Lunch as well as a light breakfast was provided by the Westfield MRC Disaster Mobile Kitchen operated by Edward Mello and his team of volunteers. Attendees were encouraged to tour the mobile kitchen before class resumed for the day.
The day ended with Psychological First Aid offered by Mary Hafey, a clinical psychologist also from Springfield and were able to meet her Service Dog, Mr. Bailey. Techniques for working with victims as well as a personal relaxation exercise were presented which the volunteers were able to practice during the training.
Special thanks to Carleen Fischer Hoffman, E. Longmeadow MRC Coordinator who worked tirelessly to make this event memorable for everyone who participated.